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A Two Page Essay

by acm


Writing two pages is easy. I mean, I've written way longer than that just for fun. All of the sudden, though, when it actually matters, my inspiration is all dried up. I'm graded on not only how good my essay, but also how long it is, which when you think about it, doesn't make any sense.

a.   There's a reason why some of the best poems are short and sweet. One of my favorite poets wrote a poem that was just two stanzas long, and it is by far my favorite of his.

b.   There's a reason why all of the best quotes are a sentence or two long. Sometimes, you're not looking for a long winded lecture- just a smart, funny quote that can make you laugh even on one of your worst days.

c.   There's a reason why short stories are so beautiful. If you can capture the true meaning of a topic in just a few pages, then that's more valuable than a hundreds of pages of plot and knowledge.

So if the best things can be short, then why can't I have a one page essay? I had all of the guidelines, the right organization, and an interesting introduction paragraph- all in one page. 

Even so, to be perfectly honest, I couldn't care less about the difference between amphibians and reptiles. You can teach me everything about a topic, give me five hundred reasons why it should interest me, and then top it off with a lecture on how this essay will greatly affect my grades. I still don't care.

I can write a two page, single spaced, list on each reason on why I simply don't care about amphibians. I'll go an a crazed research information hunt, scouring the web for why we shouldn't assign essays. I'll write a formal letter to the school, respectfully complaining about why I have to write two pages on the difference between amphibians and reptiles. 

You still can't make me care. 

So I ask the question: Why is my one page essay still not good enough?


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Sun May 29, 2016 4:53 pm
deleted21 wrote a review...



Hello! I loved this essay about how short and concise are beautiful! Sometimes, length of story, poetry can demotivate one and I think that's one of the main reasons why many of the works on this site goes unreviewed because it becomes tiresome for the reviewer. Not saying that lengthy works don't have enough potential and they shouldn't exist and whatsover, but, if one is writing something to attract a certain group of people, some eye catching stuff should be very helpful! That's why i guess infographics are so popular these days!

But, yes, it depends on the specific sort of thing you are writing. Some pieces are better long. So, when criticizing that should be kept on mind too! ^^ Great work overall!




acm says...


Thanks for the review!



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Sun May 29, 2016 4:51 pm
soundofmind wrote a review...



Ah, this was a pleasure to read (and honestly, a breath of fresh air since the grammar and what not is great). I'm pretty sure anyone who's been in school can deeply relate to this, or at least, I know I do. Length requirements have long since been a point of contention in the world of education, but normally, it seems like the rules stay in place.

I think it's mostly because of the small percentage of kids that both don't care and won't try at all on their papers. You say you've written a quality one page essay, but that might not be the case for every student. Although I still don't think that makes a very good argument for the page requirement bit. If you make the kids who don't care and won't try at all, you're just going to end up with more of the same thing - likely, a poorly written five page paper as opposed to a poorly written 1 pager.

Your arguments, however, are all very valid, relevant, and convincing - that is, if you're thinking about literature in general. I guess, my take on it, is that in the context of a learning environment, you're really not trying to get kids to write a really poignant two-liner about amphibians. What the teachers really want to see is that you guys learned about reptiles or whatever - while also evaluating your writing abilities all in one go. While as a student, it can feel forced, meaningless, and dull, there really is a point. Of course, you dismiss that point simply by saying you don't care so... *shrugging*

So yeah. Your final question isn't really new to the teaching world. Students like you, who are able to prove their collective learning of the subject and their capability to write skillfully, aren't *usually* the majority (but maybe the school system is to blame for that, who knows). The school system is far from perfect and somehow we haven't figured out how to cater to all different types of learners.

Just in case I made it seem otherwise though, I really do think your one page paper should count, if it is how you say it is (which I think you've proven simply in your ability to write this little "rant" so well).

It's the short and sweet things that people remember the most!

Keep writing! I'd love to see more from you, and hopefully this review isn't completely useless! Haha.

-Sound

*Note: I was very tired when I wrote this so if I repeat myself I am very sorry.




acm says...


Thanks for the review! I'll keep that in mind.



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Sat May 14, 2016 11:16 am
RippleGylf wrote a review...



This is a very potent argument. Having gone through idiotic essays myself, it does seem stupid sometimes. In fact, it is much more challenging to write concisely instead of packing it full with fluff. To be honest, I went into this expecting a long-winded rant, rather than a short one on long-winded-ness. A pleasure to read, for sure.




acm says...


Thank you! I'm glad you liked it!



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Wed May 11, 2016 10:55 am
MicrohieraxFT says...



Is this an actual rant? If not, I'm impressed. It's very realistic and relatable.




Random avatar

Points: 292
Reviews: 13

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Wed May 11, 2016 10:55 am
MicrohieraxFT says...



Is this an actual rant? If not, I'm impressed. It's very realistic and relatable.





If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.
— Oscar Wilde